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What to call a new menu item? Need your ideas!

sophiejj Jul 17, 2011 12:24 PM

I am a menu writer and head of R and D and we have a new salad that was well-received in a recent tasting panel. It is a salad with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, shredded cheddar , hard boiled eggs and house-mace croutons. I know this sounds very basic, but this is a kid's lunch menu and it was a hit!
Last year we had a menu item that was a vegetarian salad with much of the same but kidney beans instead of egg and it was called, "Farmer's Market Salad." It was NOT a hit and I think the name turned kids off. I hate that a good lunch option could suffer not because of yumminess, but because of a name.
What would be a fun, kid-friendly, but descriptive name for the new salad with egg?

Thanks for your ideas!!

  1. Will Owen Jul 19, 2011 05:51 PM

    Sunshine Salad. All that bright color, topped with white and yellow. And I'm assuming those are house-MADE croutons? That's a great color note there, too. I'd sure eat it; although I'm well past the target age here, I still tend to eat (and think!) like a kid …

    Kidney beans were I think a bad choice, because kids don't tend to like maroon food. It's not a naturally appetizing color for most people (I was weird - I LIKED prunes!). I'd bet that was most of the turnoff, though the unexciting name could not have helped. It sounds so … virtuous. "Bloody Boogers" might have worked better ;-)

    1. i
      Isolda Jul 19, 2011 05:29 PM

      If your tasting panel included children, and I hope it did, I'd ask them what to call it. Otherwise, I'd just call it "You Can't Order the Chicken Nuggets Unless You Order This"

      1. David11238 Jul 19, 2011 05:27 PM

        Golden Egg Ensalada

        1. LaLa Jul 19, 2011 05:02 PM

          I dont think it was the NAME that turned the kids off last years choice.

          1 Reply
          1. re: LaLa
            chefdaddyo Jul 19, 2011 05:17 PM

            Why do you have to 'name' it? Why not just list the ingreds so everybody knows exactly what it is? Salad of........

          2. greygarious Jul 18, 2011 02:18 PM

            Nickelodeon Salad - to the kids, it has a popular cable channel connotation, but it came to my mind because some of the ingredients are also in Salade Nicoise.

            1. t
              travelmad478 Jul 18, 2011 09:27 AM

              I do not mean to be denigrating sophiejj's profession, but am I the only person a little stunned to hear that a director of R&D *and* focus groups are required to come up with a salad made with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, cheese, hard boiled eggs and croutons?

              Sorry, but this state of affairs is just depressing, no matter what the salad's name is.

              2 Replies
              1. re: travelmad478
                chowser Jul 18, 2011 09:36 AM

                I did think that, too--what makes this salad "new" and why were there tasters/focus groups and R&D folks needed to come up with that? Years ago, I worked at a large food conglomerate (produce) and with their R&D group made up of PhDs in food science but they weren't needed to come up w/ ideas that essentially already exist. Is the next R&D project a pb and j sandwich?

                1. re: travelmad478
                  escondido123 Jul 18, 2011 09:36 AM

                  I totally agree and wonder about the focus groups...but then as I kid I wouldn't have liked the egg or cucumber.

                2. Terrie H. Jul 18, 2011 07:24 AM

                  Kids (and adults) seem to love things described as crunchy or cheesy, so maybe a Crunchy Cheesy Salad would appeal.

                  1. DonShirer Jul 17, 2011 06:53 PM

                    Clucky Cheese Salad

                    1. r
                      runwestierun Jul 17, 2011 04:06 PM

                      What Brontosauruses Eat For Breakfast Salad

                      1. chowser Jul 17, 2011 03:18 PM

                        An E.L.T. salad (Eggs, lettuce, tomatoes)
                        Megg-a yummy salad (get it, mega yummy?)

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: chowser
                          obsessed with food Jul 17, 2011 03:56 PM

                          "Eggs-tremely Cheezy Crunchy Salad"

                        2. Karl S Jul 17, 2011 02:44 PM

                          What kind of lettuce?

                          What kind of tomatoes? Cherry, grape, red, golden . . . or tasteless supermarket tomatoes? (If the last, you should simply replace them with black grapes or, if not in season, red grapes; do not ever bother with those kind of tomatoes.)

                          Anyway, I would call it Greens, Eggs, and Bam!

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: Karl S
                            escondido123 Jul 17, 2011 02:48 PM

                            I have the feeling your name is sooo much better than the salad!

                            1. re: escondido123
                              Karl S Jul 17, 2011 02:52 PM


                              So do I!

                              I'd like to think it's a nice lettuce (not that I have anything against iceberg, but to me, iceberg is a speciality lettuce) and decent tomatoes (but in food service, I'd suspect not, since they have to refrigerate produce, and refrigerated tomatoes are a waste of taste and $$$, so substitute grapes, which have a better yield and taste when refrigerated). And I'd switch from cheddar to feta if I could (and generic SYSCO-level feta is just interesting enough for kids without being offensive, and it keeps well).

                              1. re: Karl S
                                sophiejj Jul 17, 2011 07:13 PM

                                The sysco level feta isn't guaranteed rBST free, so I can't use it. Just one of the MANY hurdles I face on a daily basis when sourcing for ingredients!

                              2. re: escondido123
                                sophiejj Jul 17, 2011 07:05 PM

                                You might be right, it probably would raise expectations, but it is organic romaine, chopped summer tomatoes... and kids like basic. Put feta and cranberries on the salad, and you never hear the end of it:)

                              3. re: Karl S
                                sophiejj Jul 17, 2011 07:04 PM

                                This is GENIUS!:) I probably won't be able to get away with this for the actual name, but maybe in the description somewhere:) Karl, you are a witty poet!

                              4. jmcarthur8 Jul 17, 2011 12:38 PM

                                Ee - i -ee - i - o salad.

                                1. s
                                  sedimental Jul 17, 2011 12:35 PM

                                  How about "egg-citing salad"........ or "egg-cellent salad"...or .........you get the idea.

                                  1. e
                                    escondido123 Jul 17, 2011 12:34 PM

                                    Call it a "Super Cheddar Cheesy" salad and it's sure to sell. Don't mention the egg or half the kids will run away.

                                    1. arktos Jul 17, 2011 12:28 PM

                                      I'd call it a 'Meatless Chef's Salad', because that's what it is.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: arktos
                                        ipsedixit Jul 17, 2011 12:33 PM

                                        Maybe call it a "Waiter's Salad"?

                                        Because, y'know, waiters don't earn as much as chefs and can't afford meat? Just throwing it out there....

                                        1. re: ipsedixit
                                          sophiejj Jul 17, 2011 07:07 PM

                                          I'll like where you're going. Probably too much of a stretch for most 4th graders to make the connection, but I like the play on pay!

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